At the beginning of this year, we decided to take on the challenge of Veganuary. I was approaching one year of being vegetarian and my partner was considering cutting out meat, so he suggested we gave it a go.
We didn’t look back. All the amazing food we tried was like opening a door to a whole new world and after a month of it, we just carried on. If you can live your life eating incredible meals and be cruelty free, why not? It felt like a bit of a no-brainer.
Veganism is really taking off, which has made choosing to go vegan in 2020 so much easier. It’s rare to go somewhere where there isn’t a single vegan option on the menu (though, it obviously still happens).
But when we went to Brighton, we couldn’t believe the amount of choice available to us. Oxford is good, Brighton is amazing. We typed ‘vegan cafe’ into Google and were met with a long list of options – a list that would take longer than just a weekend in Brighton to explore.
But we did our best to cram as much as we could into it. So here’s where we went – and what we thought!
After turning up to our hotel to find they had lost our booking and had no rooms left (and were totally unhelpful, but that’s a story for another day), we scrambled to find somewhere to stay and didn’t check in till gone 9pm. By this time, Deliveroo was the only thing we could think about.
We settled on vegan burgers from Smashburger, alongside some delicious (greasy) fries. All a bit lukewarm, but that’s pretty standard when you get takeaway. Still delicious and the perfect comfort after the stress of finding somewhere to stay at the last minute.
Saturday morning saw us wandering down to the Green Kitchen vegan cafe. The menu was amazing! It’s a rare luxury to be able to sit down in a restaurant and know that everything on the menu is available to you. I went for hot chocolate (with cream and marshmallows, obvs) and french toast with yoghurt and berries, whilst Jake opted for an oat latte and the mini (yes, really) full english.
The food was incredible – a bit too much for me to finish – and great value for money. I think the whole thing came to just over £20. I fully recommend this place.
After a wander around the shops, a quick stop on the beach and then a walk towards the i360 (which gave me flashbacks to the final stretch of the marathon), we sat ourselves down outside Really Happy Chicken.
We were still pretty full from breakfast, so decided to share a sweet chilli chicken wrap. It was SO GOOD. I wish we’d eaten there more than once to be honest, it was so incredible. The ‘chicken’ was deep fried seitan, which is a bit of a hit or miss for me but this was SUCH A HIT. I’m sat here thinking about it and I can remember how much I enjoyed it so vividly. That makes me really sad, doesn’t it?
We saw on Instagram that this place was doing Mr Whippy ice creams (and a flake!) literally days before we came to Brighton and we totally lucked out with the weather being so warm, so we ventured along after our chicken wrap.
I didn’t love mine. It was good but quite thin, not as creamy as I’d hoped. Still though, vegan soft serve. Can’t complain too much!
We’d booked ourselves in for dinner at Purezza on Saturday night – and again, it’s a completely vegan restaurant, so we didn’t have to worry about what we chose on the menu. I couldn’t decide between pizza and lasagne but ended up sticking with the classic (pizza). We also shared a delicious garlic bread and the most incredible salted caramel brownie and ice cream.
Being such a sweet tooth, my pet peeve going anywhere that does vegan food is that they don’t always have good vegan dessert options (if any at all). Like, sorbet is nice but it’s not a real dessert!
The service left a bit to be desired here but the food totally made up for it.
Our final stop was for brunch on Sunday morning. Whilst this place wasn’t completely vegan, I’d seen a few people online go here and recommend it so we thought we’d give it a go. The food was amazing! I got an organic vegan hot chocolate and waffles with berries, whilst Jake got pancakes.
My only complaint was that I couldn’t finish it! Oh, and that you HAD to download an app just to get the menu. A QR code to the website would have been so much easier.
I’m still totally amazed at how great the vegan experience is in Brighton. It felt like everywhere we went, even ‘meaty’ places, had signs outside boasting their vegan offering. There’s obviously just so much demand for it there and that’s really lovely to see.
It’s tempting to go back just to eat at the places we didn’t make it to – let us know if you have any other recommendations!